Campus Attractions at Nova Southeastern University
By Florence B. Snyder
Community engagement is more than a motto at Nova Southeastern University. It's in the Fort Lauderdale university's DNA, a legacy of a group of 1960s Broward County business and civic leaders who called themselves “The Oatmeal Club.”
As the name suggests, they met regularly for breakfast and dreamed of creating an "MIT of the South" which would bring the world to Broward County, and Broward County to the world. Today, NSU is an academic
home to 25,000 students and a place where Nova's next-door neighbors, as well as the most sophisticated travelers, can always find something interesting to do.
NSU’s Alvin Sherman Library, Research and Information Technology Center is large, gorgeous, and open to the public. The library welcomes visitors to author readings, book discussion groups, and skills-building classes. Parents and grandparents take advantage of special programs for teenagers, toddlers, and ’tweens while they take a relaxing personal hour off and curl up with a good book in one of the Library's many comfortable “reading niches.” For those who prefer to work or play online, there's wireless internet service everywhere.
Soak up some good karma at the Library’s Buddhist Prayer Wheel. The wheel was hand-crafted by Tibetan metalsmiths and monks, and blessed by the Dalai Lama himself on a visit to NSU in 2004. Rarely seen outside of Buddhist temples, the Prayer Wheel is an "interactive holy shrine" containing millions of prayers. According to tradition, each time the wheel is turned, prayers are sent out to all of humanity.
The library also houses the Glass Garden, an 18-foot-wide, 7½-foot-tall bouquet of brilliantly colored blooms created by master craftsman Dale Chihuly. NSU’s Glass Garden is one of just six Chihuly works in the world commissioned specifically for a library.
The esteemed Broward Center for the Performing Arts serves as managing partner for NSU's Rose and Alfred Miniaci Performing Arts Center. The 500-seat facility is state of the art and offers big venue quality music, theater and dance at modest or no cost.
The NSU Art Museum is so highly regarded that it was among one of only four venues invited to host the 2005 traveling exhibit of relics from the tomb of Egyptian Pharaoh Tutankhamen. The permanent collection skews modern and includes a significant collection of ceramics by Pablo Picasso, and North America's largest exhibition of work from the postwar, avant-garde CoBrA artists of Northern European.
The museum's modernist building is, itself, a work of art. The original construction dates back to 1986 and was designed by the renowned architect Edward Larrabee Barnes. The Glackens wing, added in 2001, houses a collection of more than 500 works from American realist painter William Glackens. It’s the largest collection of his work in existence, and includes both his oldest known (“Philadelphia Landscape, 1893”) and last completed (“White Rose and Other Flowers, 1937”) paintings. The Glackens collection also includes archival materials, as well as other celebrated artists in Glackens’ circle of friends.
Other museum fan favorites are the second floor sculpture garden, and the museum’s significant collection of works by leading Latin and Latin-American modern and contemporary artists, including Diego Rivera.
When you go…
Nova Southeastern University
3301 College Ave, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., 33314